S2E7: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Beginnings /:7:/ Original Sin. Murder & Mayhem.
Genesis 3 begins with the introduction of the serpent (Satan) who will lure the woman (Eve) into disobeying God’s command. Her partner, Adam, is quick to participate in the disobedience as well. Ashamed, they hide from God, who persuades them to admit to their disobedience. God then pronounces judgment on Satan, Adam, and Eve, which have lasting impacts on men and women even today. But quickly following God's judgment is God's grace. God provides clothing for Adam and Eve, but banishes them from the garden of Eden to experience the consequence of disobedience and sin.1 In this gathering we'll examine the effects of original sin on our lives today and how we can experience God's grace and forgiveness.
Scripture Covered: Genesis 3-6
Themes: Original Sin, Exile, Satan, Fallen Angels, and Important Genealogies
Daily Reading Plan for this Series - totally optional... Just Show Up!
Adam and Eve’s disobedience introduces sin into the world. From this point on, humanity’s relationship with God is strained, and God's presence seems distant from our human senses because of our "fallen" state. By eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, Adam and Eve brought the world into a fallen condition that is now commonly called "the human condition". This imputed sin nature is something we've inherited, and we continue to struggle with it. But the Genesis narrative also sets up the broader biblical hope of redemption, in Christ’s victory over sin and death.2
The Apostle Paul reinforces this hope in his letter to the Christians in Rome, saying:
"Just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned...so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous... so that grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 5:12-21)
Our ministry partners at The Bible Project have created a wonderful video describing the biblical definition of the concept of sin. It might surprise you to learn that sin is more than just the guilt-inspiring moral failures of preachy religious people, but is in fact a much bigger and broader concept that can inspire us to much greater things. Enjoy!
It didn't take long for it to all go bad. Adam and Eve are enjoying time in the Garden with full and direct access to God, not lacking any provision except one thing... they had no concept of good versus evil. Until this point in their existence, Adam and Eve's experience was limited to the elation of a perfect and immortal existence in the presence of total goodness! But then God placed a unique and peculiar tree in the middle of the Garden, and with it just one command: "Don't eat from it" God says. Then God introduces another character into the story, a creature known as the Serpent, who Jesus later reveals as the instrument (or incarnation) of Satan himself (Revelation 20:2). Satan is an angel who's name in Hebrew means the "accuser". He is the adversary of humanity who reveals the power and consequence of humanity's free will; and humanity has never been the same since. Was this a divine setup from the very beginning?! Or is sin (and salvation) part of God's ultimate plan for our spiritual maturity?
This is an important study, providing context for the human condition and an understanding of the Christian life. Our gathering only scratches the surface, but the notes go a little deeper. We encourage you to spend some time with this topic, and ask questions... we're here to help!
1 Douglas Mangum, Miles Custis, and Wendy Widder, Genesis 1–11, Lexham Research Commentaries (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012), Ge 3:1–24.